The hearing of the Sabarimala Temple case concluded yesterday evening and the five-judge bench of the Supreme Court, headed by CJI Deepak Mishra reportedly asked the lawyers of both sides to compile their submissions and submit to the court within a week’s time. As reported by Organiser, Advocate Prerna Kumari, who is one of the petitioners in the case demanding the entry of women to the temple, revealed that she respects the sentiments of female devotees of the temple who are ready to wait till they turn 50 and allowed entry to the temple.
Advocate Prerna Kumari reportedly told Organiser that while signing for the petition, she did not have a better understanding of the customs of Tantric traditions being followed in the Sabarimala temple. She added that at that time she just considered that the issue of not allowing women of reproductive age into the temple is a simple matter of gender bias. She admitted that she had later come to know of the real sentiments of women devotees attached to the temple after the popular campaign of #ReadyToWait.
Previously, another petitioner Advocate Sudha Pal had also shared the same views. There are five petitioners in the case. Advocates Prerna Kumari and Sudha Pal reportedly stated that they were under the false impression that the Travancore Devaswom Board had banned women from entering the temple who are actually interested to go and offer puja there. They stated that there were also news reports that the temple had to undergo a purification ritual after actress Jayamala went inside. They both reportedly admitted that this incident had triggered them to approach the court.
Advocated Prerna reportedly added that the desire to pursue the matter legally emanated from their ignorance about the diversity of the Sanatana Dharma. She added that the age-old traditions and customs must prevail in Sabarimala. Both the petitioners reportedly stated that over the years, they have been approached by many women from Kerala and elsewhere and were told that their petition demanding entry is hurtful to the sentiments of women devotees of the temple who obey and respect the traditions faithfully. They reasserted that the media hype of the Jayamala controversy was the main reason behind their decision. Advocate Prerna has reportedly also added that by the time she understood the complete picture, it was too late to withdraw her petition and thus she had refrained herself from making any public statements. She has also added that she is not a member of the Young Lawyer’s Association.
Advocate Prerna also reportedly stated that she has nothing to do with the Happy to Bleed group who had joined the case later in 2016. She added that she is totally against the group and their campaign. Asserting a strong disagreement with attempts to turn the issue as anti-Hindu, advocate Prerna reportedly stated that Indira Jaising had joined later when the case drew national attention after the Happy to Bleed campaign. She added that the issue has been deliberately turned towards hurting the religious sentiments of practising Hindu women.
Both petitioners have reportedly stated that they are happy the honourable Supreme Court has given all parties a chance to table their viewpoints and the issue has been deliberated threadbare. They added that they would honour and welcome the judgement of the Supreme Court.
The Supreme Court bench comprising of Justice RF Nariman, AM Khanwaliker, Indu Malhotra and DY Chandrachud, headed by CJI Deepak Mishra has been hearing the case. Senior advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi had represented the Travancore Devaswom Board, Mr Prasharan had represented the Nair Service Society, K Radhakrishnan represented the Padalam Royal family, V Giri represented the Tanthri of the temple while J Sai Deepak represented the group People For Dharma, who had led the #ReadyToWait campaign on behalf of women devotees.